This past Friday night, Noel received a call from home, just before bedtime. This is a fairly routine time of the day when his family checks in with him. I happened to pick up another extension at the same time and could hear his mother crying. I immediately went into Noel’s room and found him crouched on the floor, sobbing into the phone. He quickly shared that his beloved pet deer, “Bambi” had run away. Last summer, Noel had spent two months working and saving for his own deer. After returning from the States, he bought baby Bambi and quickly learned how to bottle feed him. Even though Noel had been raised in a family that has to hunt for survival, he bought this deer to be his special pet, and was the only child around who had one. Noel was so proud of Bambi, and happily showed him off to others. This summer he was once again working and saving with the hopes of buying a female deer (to be named “Princessa”) who could mate with Bambi.
It took a while to console Noel…telling him that maybe Bambi found his way back home. Unfortunately, it didn’t have a happy ending. The next day Noel’s parents called to say they had found Bambi, but someone had thrown a knife at him and he was dead. Ofcourse this news was heart breaking to Noel. Thankfully, Ricky was home to cheer him up and in time Noel was able to move on. Noel told me that “one day he would become president of Honduras and there would be no more killing animals!” A wonderful dream from an innocent child.
Noel returned home early this morning with new plans for the future. He has decided that it will be too hard to buy another deer and nobody will replace “Bambi.” Now his goal is to buy a cow, which will provide milk for his family…this little guy is growing up, and we couldn’t be more proud.